Sunshine for the Mayor or for the Kids

I was drawn to the article, “Pugh to travel to U.S. Conference of Mayors,” 6-17-17. We are informed that the Baltimore City Board of Estimates approved $5600 for Mayor Pugh and an aide to spend 4 nights in Miami for attending the Mayors‘ Conference.. I concede that $5600, in the grand scheme of things, is not an enormous sum when considering the millions and millions of dollars of taxpayer money squandered by the Mayor, Board of Estimates, and the City Council. However, the principle of the matter bothers me.

Performing a simple math operation, 4 days and nights equals 96 hours. I ask two questions. The first is how many of those hours will actually be spent on trying to come up with real solutions for the problems that are confronting cities all over the country. The second question is how many of those hours will be spent on having a “good time?”

It seems to me if the Mayor wanted to demonstrate a genuine concern for the taxpayers, here’s something more consequential she might have done. Assign one of her aides to engage in research to ascertain which mayor has been the most efficient in getting a handle on the crime and education problems in his/her city. Mayor Pugh could follow up on the phone and/or skype to conduct a conference call for the purpose of picking the brain of that mayor and learning about strategies she could implement for the good of the city. Not only would she save the taxpayers $5600, but she might be able to govern better also. Another thought – wouldn’t it be nice if she had thought of using the money to send a few students to get some sun shine at summer camp rather than sending herself to the Sunshine State.

Oh well, such is life for a “good public servant” like Mayor Pugh.

Ralph Jaffe
Teacher and Democratic candidate for governor in 2018 primary election



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